Corporate Rates & breakfast

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Redbirds's picture
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07/26/2008

Good morning!  No guests today, so I get to chat early.  Q: When a business traveler gives you the corporate budget of say, $97, and wants to stay at your B&B, do you honor that price?  Do you cook a full breakfast or offer a continental BF?  I haven't offered a continental BF yet, and was wondering what might be standard items.  Thanks in advance for your input!  Sally

Morticia's picture
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05/22/2008

We have found that most biz guests want the full breakfast, just earlier. Some are on their own schedule so they eat at the regular time. We don't usually get corp guests in the summer, so the room rates we post for the winter generally are low enough to get the biz traveler in without any discount.

Around here, I have found, the corp guests go for the hotels. They don't think they will get internet at a B&B, they think the innkeepers will be poking their noses into everything, etc. It's a bad rep and I don't know where most of them picked it up.

We have one guest who comes every year at the same time. Another who drops in every few months. (And he drives an hour to get to his morning destination!)

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06/24/2008

Our primary weekday business are business clients - mostly Gov. or going to Gov. facilities.  I agree with other posts here that one of the main reasons they choose staying at a B&B over a traditional hotel is the breakfast, hot & fresh, served with a smiling face!  

Business travelers tire of the 'cookie cutter' hotel rooms and enjoy having a more 'home style' environment to come back to at the end of the day.  One of the corp. clients I had yesterday provided his thoughts on business stays at B&B's:

  • He prefers a hot meal so a B&B is nice
  • Not a lot of nick/nacks
  • wireless - a must
  • Worries about not being part of social scene

As my weekday business changed over the years I changed my weekday breakfast hours to 7:30 - 8:30 but will alter to make them happy.  A happy business client can lead to a regular guest and to many new guests too.  They spread the word quickly!

I base my price primarily on the Gov. per diem rates for my area.  But if you are not in a heavily traveled gov. area, those rates can be too low to base your corp. rate on.  Do a search in your area for the hotels and view their corp. rate, then set your corp. rate from there. 

Most important thing is to watch your 'traffic' to know what type of visitors you are attracting and when (seasons).  For weak weekday rentals, corporate or government business can be a business savor. 

Note:  I do not advertise my Corp/Gov. rate, nor have that on Webervations.  I have a notation on my site to call for corp/gov. rates.  That works.  I also have distributed letters with my brochure to area businesses and gov. agencies requesting to be added to their lodging lists for visiting clients. 

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05/30/2008

We also have a note on the web site to call re: corporate and long term rates.  Good advice to check that the local government rates are not too low. 

I also forgot to mention that having a daily paper is a good thing for the business guests.  I'll run & get the USA Today when they are here...not enough traffic yet to subscribe to it. 

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08/23/2008

Our corp. rate is about half of our normal rooms so we do not offer a full breakfast. Our cont. offers the guest coffee, jucie, a fresh fruit parfait with homemade granola and a whatever fresh treat our pastery chef has prepard that day. However we do give guests the option to upgrade to our "full" 2 course breakfast for an additonal 20 dollars. We do everything here as organic and fresh as possible so this is really as cheap as we can do it for them. Most of the time they need to be up and leave earlier than I even serve breakfast as it is.

A nice idea that we do is a "self serve" breakfast for those guest who need to be gone before I even come down in the morning. (I refuse to be here before 7. I need my sleep too!) Everything is left out in the kitchen and set up for the guest to help themself to whatever they would like for breakfast.

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05/22/2008

Hey welcome to innspiring.com J. Wilton. From the looks of your pic..you are a neighbor in HarrisonburgSmiling..well close...I am in Luray

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08/23/2008

Well thanks for the welcome Smiling I've visited this site several times since I started at my B and B and you all looked so helpful that I just had to join!

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05/30/2008

Glad to have you here and that you're part of the discussion!  Welcome

Redbirds's picture
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07/26/2008

Thank you all!  Our rates are $125.  This particular business only allows $97 for its corporate rate.  He's coming in tonight...originally booked one night, and just got a call that he'd like to stay here as long as he can for the next 2 weeks!  Got to go grocery shopping now.  I love this job!  Sally

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05/30/2008

Super!  That is not such a huge discount for a single guest if you think about it.  I hope that he turns out to be a great guest for you Smiling  I have to say that I really do love our business guests here. 

I forgot to mention that I will often only do every other day housekeeping for longer term guests based on the rate.  Just figure out what works for you!

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

Our per diem (State) is about half my regular rate for my big room. I told my City Manager I would give the per diem to a job candidate interviewing here today (not for the City, but she is on the selection committee) expecting it to be one person so would go in a smaller room.

He did not make a reservation and showed up on the porch yesterday afternoon with his wife (and all three rooms were still dirty because I had nothing on the books & told them to walk around town while I cleaned). I gave them the big room and a full breakfast this morning for the per diem. They are obviously first time B & B (and I hope not the last) and if he gets the job will have to house hunt - perhaps in this area. So I am hoping it will be future business, but even if it is not, I know I did the right thing for me to do. (Today was Farmer's Market so as the bread was coming out of the oven, I was leaving them to take it over to the market. And they were OK with that.)

That is your answer too - what is the right thing for YOU to do for YOU and your business.

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05/22/2008

That is up to you and  how badly you want or need the business. We never had business folks here so never had to deal with it. If that is less than your normal rate..and I hope it is...do they want breakfast??? That can knock off a few bucks..but my suspicion is that they want it ALL and more for THEIR price. If you feel adequately compensated and if it will bring you more business to eventually make up the difference, they that is YOUR decision. You are not bound by anything people ask of you.

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05/30/2008

catlady wrote:

That is up to you and  how badly you want or need the business. We never had business folks here so never had to deal with it.

This is key!  We love business guests here.  They are our best guests usually - a single traveler, out all day, not demanding at all, they love staying someplace other than a hotel, and they appreciate everything that we have to offer.  They can be a great revenue source for mid-week business if you usually do not have it where you are.  My November business guests are paying the bills

JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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05/22/2008

Many of our business travelers - if govmt, have paid the extra out of pocket to stay with us.  But again, they do get the per diem for meals, so they really aren't paying it in the end.  They know how to work it out.

The TAX EXEMPT thing is a stickler for me, as I have to remember they are tax exempt when I do the town and state taxes.  I usually put a reminder in outlook to catch it.

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05/30/2008

Depends on what your regular rates are.  Is this a corporate guest that has a lodging rate plus a per diem for meals? 

A good thing to do is to know the government rate for your area.  You can just Google that - it varies from place to place.  Also good to know what the local hotels offer for a corporate rate.

I have $129 for our corporate rate and that will include our full breakfast as well.  If they want a Continental, I'll do that for them but so far they all have wanted the full breakfast.

I've also done a slightly lower rate for professors here for an interview (not reimbursed by the university) and a have a lower long term rate (same as the government rate) for a couple of companies here on a long term stay over 5 days.  We have a guest coming that the University is paying for them & they are not subject to the State sales tax either.  They have to fill out a form for that in order not to be charged for the State tax and there's an exception area on our State sales tax form.  More paperwork!

JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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05/22/2008

Full breakfast.  My theory - the reason this business guest is staying with you VS a hotel that caters to business travelers is he wants some home cooked food and a non-hotel environment (which he is sick of).

I have not have any business guests decline breakfast or ask for a continental. In fact had one last week from Nashville who called and specifically asked "Will it be a hot meal?"

 

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05/30/2008

I agree!  It's a respite from the other places with the breakfast "buffet".  Our business guests have really enjoyed the atmosphere of breakfast here...especially good coffee!!  Smiling 

JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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Samster wrote:

I agree!  It's a respite from the other places with the breakfast "buffet".  Our business guests have really enjoyed the atmosphere of breakfast here...especially good coffee!!  Smiling 


As a side note -- The to-go breakfast is outstanding and very thoughtful!

THIS IS WHY THEY LIKE TO STAY AT B&B's! They get treated like humans not dollar signs and room numbers!  A BIG DIFF!

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06/02/2008

I treat my business travelers like anyone else.  Have to usually be more flexible with them, but they bring revenue.  Usually my business travelers are up and gone early before 8am.  So I ask them what they like and pass some of my breakfasts by them.  They usually aren't eating a big breakfast, so it is usually an omlette, or scrambled eggs, sausage, toast, coffee to go, etc.

Mine have been pretty easy.  I have one now for 5 days and she needs breakfast at 715 to teach at 8. So pretty easy.

seashanty's picture
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06/02/2008

hawley wrote:

 They usually aren't eating a big breakfast, so it is usually an omlette, or scrambled eggs, sausage, toast, coffee 

that sounds like a big breakfast to me!

 

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